Our weekly feature - The Armchair Expert - returns just in time for the finals!
This week we look a...
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The weekly column here at Leagueunlimited is to highlight what we here on the site think are the best players in each round of the 2004 NRL competition. Based on the opinion received from the Leagueunlimited.com live updaters, we have put together what we think is the team of the week for round 6.
Once again a few unexpected results, the more noticeable being the Sharks putting in a great performance against the Canberra Raiders, and the Dragons outstanding match to defeat the Panthers in such a polished performance.
Leagueunlimited Team of the Week - Round 6:
1. Luke Patten - This steady fullback certainly is solid at the back. The Warriors, when they stepped into gear, launched numerous attacks at the Bulldogs line of defence. Patten with the help of his team-mates was tireless in defence and proved far too strong for the Warriors attack on many occasions.
2. Jake Webster - Jake Webster who was a late inclusion for the injured Ben MacDougall certainly made an impact on the Storm game against the Rabbitohs in Saturday night. The Melbourne-born center/winger made the most of the opportunity by scoring three tries, a fine effort for being called into the side so late.
3. Jamaal Lolesi - Two early tries against the Warriors last Friday night in Wellington certainly set the stage for Lolesi to have a top notch match, which he certainly did. Unfortunately not chosen for the Kiwi side this time around, however if he keeps playing the way he is, the selectors will have to take note.
4. Matt Cooper - Matt Cooper scoring a club record four tries on his 25th birthday. What a way to celebrate! An exciting match in front of a full house at WIN Stadium, and a great outcome for the Dragons. A great birthday present for Cooper.
5. Chris Walker - The Roosters did it hard up in Newcastle on Sunday. One player who gets himself involved in the match is Walker. His try in the early part of the 2nd half against Newcastle is testimant to that when he followed a kick by Finch which was bumbled by the opposition, leaving Walker to pick up the scraps and score. Certainly a useful player in any side.
6. Darren Lockyer - Starting to sound like a broken record when it comes to Lockyer but his play from the five-eighth position is nothing short of outstanding. His passing, kicking, defence and running are spot on and his place in the Kangaroo side to take on the Kiwis is well deserved, as is his captaincy.
7. Brett Kimmorley - The way Brett Kimmorley ignited the Sharks on Saturday evening against the Raiders was inspiring. Very unlucky not to make the Kangaroo side, Kimmorley put all his talents on show on Saturday in what was a great game for any Sharks fan.
8. Robbie Kearns - He may be into his thirties but Kearns can certainly mix it up with any young kid on the block. In front of his home crowd in Melbourne, Kearns led the attack many times not to mention his tackling, 28 tackles and 16 hit ups is impressive.
9. Danny Buderus - With such an experienced hooker in their side, the Knights players certainly rally around and put pressure on the opposition. Buderus with his little darts from dummy half, helped his team come so close to scoring the win in front of a fantastic home crowd in Newcastle. An excellent choice for the Kangaroos.
10. Danny Nutley - Leading from the front in the game against the Raiders, Nutley put his head down and charged. He made 21 hitups and 33 tackles in the match, certainly a great effort by the big man.
11. Nathan Hindmarsh - Hindmarsh has gone from strength to strength over the past few weeks and certainly has earned his spot in the Kangaroo side. The commitment he's shown on the field is certainly something young players can aspire too. The game against the Sea Eagles was a tough match and the Eels sneaking in the win was helped by the likes of Hindmarsh.
12. Lance Thompson - The atmosphere at WIN Stadium was electrifying on Sunday afternoon and if it helped to lift the Dragons players then Lance Thompson definitely responded. A great match by the big second rower helped to top of a great day for the Dragons and their supporters.
13. Glenn Morrison - Although the Cowboys were defeated by the Broncos on Saturday night, inspirational play by Glenn Morrison helped to keep the Cowboys in the hunt right up to the final whistle. Great to see him score a try early in the match.
14. Danny Williams - Danny Williams celebrated his 200th NRL game in style at Olympic Park on Saturday night, with the veteran second-rower claiming two tries in the Storm's 50-4 demolition of the South Sydney Rabbitohs. With Williams a very important part of the Storm squad both on and off the field, it's nice to see him able to remember his 200th game in style.
15. Willie Mason - Not wanted by the Kangaroo selectors, Mason put on a show in the game against the Warriors that may make them rue their decision not to include him in the squad. A fine performance running hard, tackling well and being rewarded with a well earned try.
16. Michael Crocker - Crocker has deserved his spot on the interchange bench for the test match next Friday night after a perfect performance with the boot in Sunday's game against the Knights, and a solid performance all around the field.
17. Nathan Cayless - Being named in the Kiwi test side on Sunday night, and maybe even captain if Wiki is ruled out, must've capped off a fine day for Nathan Cayless. Not only did he score the try right on halftime to put his team in the lead, he also was inspirational on the field for the Eels win over the Sea Eagles.